June 19, 2014
The 2014 Kia Forte earned four out of five stars in the overall safety rating from the NHTSA.
It breaks down like this:See full article and comment.
June 3, 2014
One of the things I like about our long-term 2014 Kia Forte is its eye-catching crimson red paint. But the only other colorful option on the 2014 Forte is a bright blue.
The other colors are white, black, silver, gray, and a bluish gray. No green, no alternate red like a burgundy, no pastel shades, no warm colors in the gold/orange/beige family. And the interior only comes in black or gray. It has a very limited color palette.
March 25, 2014
We've had our 2014 Kia Forte in our long-term fleet for about 9 months now. We also just recently cleared 15,000 miles in the car, which means we're right on schedule for getting about 20,000 miles at the completion of our one-year test.
March 24, 2014
Choosing a new small sedan to buy for 2014 isn't easy. There are plenty of great choices. But if you end up with a 2014 Kia Forte you'll have what I find to be one of the best cars in the class.
March 6, 2014
If you have a dog you know what it's like to put the key in your front door and hear the eager barking inside. Not to take anything away from man's best friend, but the LED perimeter approach lighting and illuminated door handle pockets on our long-term 2014 Kia Forte EX have a similar effect.
March 5, 2014
Rear vents seem like a no brainer, one of those things you expect to have in any modern vehicle with rear seats. Surprisingly enough, they're not always as prevalent as you think. There's a certain pickup truck in our fleet that has full-size rear seats and no vents.
February 25, 2014
In our long-term introductions we always list the MSRP of the vehicle we are testing. But we rarely talk about what it would actually cost to buy the car. Of course, the purchase price is a moving target. Incentives come and go. The price of new cars rises and falls. And car buyers each have their own ability level when it comes to deal-making.
Since I liked this feature-rich 2014 Kia Forte EX, and I'm coming out of a lease on my current car this summer, I was curious to know what it would take to put this car in my garage. So I ran the numbers to see how much a purchase and a monthly payment would cost. Here's the skinny.
January 10, 2014
Hiring away designer Peter Schreyer from Audi is one of the best decisions ever made at Kia. His presence at the company over the last six years has resulted in dramatically better looking cars that usually manage not to hit you over the head with overdone styling flourishes.
Our long-term 2014 Kia Forte EX sedan is an example of this new wave of Kias, and these LED taillights are one of my favorite design details.
December 25, 2013
I continue to enjoy the styling of our 2014 Kia Forte EX long-termer. It has sleek, interesting lines and some neat details.
What's truly cool is that with cars like this Forte, the Ford Focus and the new Mazda 3, this compact economy segment offers buyers multiple choices of good-looking cars.
December 19, 2013
The only thing worse than having a stranger frantically wave at you from across the parking lot is to then have that stranger point out the new scrape on your car.
December 17, 2013
Our 2014 Kia Forte test car crossed the 10,000-mile mark this weekend, which means we've added 5,000 miles to the odo since mid-September.
November 22, 2013
The service advisor, of course, prepped me for what would come next. You might get a survey, he said, and we want to make sure you were 100 percent satisfied with the service. I nodded, smiled. I might have said that everything was great, and it was.
The next morning, I got an email from the dealership's CSI administrator. These initials, of course, do not stand for "crime scene investigation," but for "customer satisfaction index."
"If we have not achieved EXCELLENCE in your service experience, we have failed," the note said. The tone was one of slight panic. (I should add that the dealership didn't know that this was an Edmunds car. I used my own contact info.)
Later in the day, I got the dealership's invitation to join its email service-reminder list, with a promise of lots of perks. Still later, I got a phone call from the service department, just checking in to make sure the service experience was all it could have been. I assured the caller it was fine.
November 20, 2013
I had just picked up our 2014 Kia Forte after its first service when I realized I was behind another Forte EX, also in Crimson Red. I don't know what year this one is, but you can see how the Forte is evolving, having shed its boxier backend and squared off headlights with the 2014 redesign.
November 15, 2013
I always get happy when I see that a car has seat heaters. Our 2014 Kia Forte positioned the buttons right where you can't miss them. The Forte driver gets heated and cooled seats, but the passenger only gets heat.
But that's OK. At least they provide something for the passenger.
November 13, 2013
I grew up in Philadelphia, sometimes affectionately referred to as Philthydelphia. From time to time (and this is pretty gross) a pig truck would try to take an illegal shortcut through my neighborhood and pollute the air. A pig truck is just like what it sounds, a truck full of pigs. And boy did they leave a trail of stick behind them. We'd all run for cover, shut our windows and protect our noses. I don't think they do this anymore, at least I hope not.
November 12, 2013
When I opened the doors on our 2014 Kia Forte, I noticed something unique: reflectors. Sure, I've got them on the wheels of my bicycle, but I couldn't recall seeing this feature on the inside of many car doors.
November 8, 2013
You can tow anything behind a motorhome if you load it on a trailer first. But most RV regulars see this as a huge hassle, and they'd rather not have to resort to a two-wheel tow dolly, either.
The ideal scenario is shown above. A so-called "dinghy" vehicle tags along behind on its own four wheels, ready to be unhooked and driven on side trips while the motorhome sits moored with its awnings unfurled and its sliders popped out in full relaxation mode. Flat-towing makes it unnecessary to fret about the extra towed weight, loading time and storage problem that a trailer or dolly represents.
That's all well and good, but could I tow our 2014 Kia Forte behind a motorhome?
Sorry, but the answer seems to be "no." The owner's manual in our 2014 Kia Forte does not authorize it for such duty.
This answer isn't spelled out specifically because, quite frankly, the owner's manual creates the impression that Kia doesn't even know what dinghy towing is. There's no acknowledgement that flat-towing exists beyond the need for vehicle recovery after a mechanical breakdown.
November 7, 2013
During the four months we've had the 2014 Kia Forte in our long-term fleet, there hasn't been much to complain about. It's a strong competitor in the compact sedan segment, partially because of how functionally excellent it is, but also because of quality styling cues. Take the headlights, for example.
September 17, 2013
There's no modern production vehicle sold today in America that I'd describe as "hard to drive," at least in the sense that something like a Ford Model A would be challenging unless you're very familiar with it. That said, I have noticed our 2014 Kia Forte is super easy to drive, which is perfect for an affordable sedan like this.
September 13, 2013
After spending three glorious days in our long-term Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster last week, I hopped in our Kia Forte last week for a trip to San Diego.
I expected at least some initial shock based on the differences between the two cars, but it just wasn't there. Sure, the Forte is no tire-shredding supercar, but it was comfortable along the highway and (as many of our editors have noted) it feels nicer than its price tag suggests.
September 12, 2013
Our 2014 Kia Forte has crested 5,000 miles on its odometer. So far the Forte has been trouble free in our driving, and we've already used it for a couple road trips.
August 29, 2013
The first car review I wrote was for the 1996 Kia Sephia. It was for Automobile Magazine, and if there was a link to that old CompuServe page, I would certainly post it.
Folks back then were like, "Kia? I thought it was Chia (Pet)."
August 23, 2013
Can you notice two discrepancies in this photo of our long-term 2014 Kia Forte?
August 22, 2013
Aside from our Tesla, this 2014 Kia Forte is my current favorite car in our long-term fleet.
I have a soft spot for cars in this economy compact segment. They are the workhorses of the middle class. And in the real world (that world that exists outside the fantasy of automotive journalism), this is probably the level of car I would buy for myself.
August 14, 2013
The results are in for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety small-car "overlap" crash test, and the news is not good for Kia.
The 2014 Kia Forte was the worst performer in the test that replicates a crash in which the front corner of a vehicle strikes another vehicle or an object like a tree or a utility pole at 40 mph.
August 5, 2013
As a former art director/layout slave, I have a certain fondness for good graphics. And our Kia Forte's got them.
July 30, 2013
See that little button on the steering wheel of the 2014 Kia Forte that looks like a steering wheel? You might assume it was the switch to turn on the heated wheel (which it also has), but you'd be wrong. That button changes the feedback of the electric-assist power steering (EPS).
Click through to see more.
July 26, 2013
After spending a few days in our long-term 2014 Kia Forte, I found that the navigation system and its associated functions are very easy to use and nicely designed. Take for instance this notification I got when the fuel was low.
July 22, 2013
I'm a fan of daytime running lights (DRLs). They make it easier for me to spot cars at a glance in the rear-view mirror and on the road. In Canada, all cars are required to have DRLs. In the U.S., it is optional. Kia opted not to include DRLs on the 2014 Forte. But this could be a quick fix, if Kia wanted to add them.
July 19, 2013
The word forte has two useful meanings: 1) something you're good at and 2) a musical instruction to play strong and loud. And I thought I knew how to pronounce it, too. For-tay, right?
But a couple of years ago I did something I'd never done before: I watched a season of Celebrity Apprentice. Penn Jillette was making his first appearance on one of the teams. His opponents named their team Forte to reflect their presumed skill and confidence, and they went around pronouncing it like I always had.
"It's pronounced fort," grumbled Penn more than once. He may have thrown a "morons" in there, too. I forget.
July 12, 2013
As if I didn't have enough reasons to dislike Vegas already, traffic was big-time backed up on Interstate 15 as we headed out of the city on Sunday. At 8:30 in the morning!
This was clearly going to be a miserable road trip back to southern California. A plan was needed. Super secret back route, here we come.
July 11, 2013
I don't know about you, but I can only take Vegas for so long. Especially when it's miserably hot and the strip is crowded with all manner of...people.
So we took a break from Vegas during our Vegas weekend with a side trip to the Hoover Dam and Lake Mead in the 2014 Kia Forte EX.
July 10, 2013
A road trip to Las Vegas in the summer? Pure insanity, even with the cooled driver's seat in our 2014 Kia Forte EX.
So why did I go? Good question. Honestly, I still question it myself.
July 5, 2013
I broke in our new 2014 Kia Forte by using it to carry precious cargo: my dog Mya. Since it was a gorgeous weekend I wanted to bring her to Santa Monica for a morning run. Fortunately, the Forte had everything to make her short trip to the beach extra comfortable.